Valuing people and helping them maintain a healthy lifestyle is essential for every business. Whether you have a handful or hundreds of staff, there are many ways to improve their wellbeing. We found a few ideas for providing a good working environment for both mental and physical health.
Tip 1 - How Did You Get Here?
Wherever you work, there is often some sort of travel involved. Businesses can help with some easy schemes, such as adjusting office hours to take advantage of cheaper rail fares. One of the most successful ways to help employees travel to work cheaply, safely and healthily is to get involved in the cycle scheme. Not only does the scheme allow the employee to save money on the cost of a bike and accessories, but there are also National Insurance savings to be made.
Tip 2 - Stay Hydrated
Do you drink enough water each day? Do you know how much is enough? There's advice online from the NHS that advises six to eight glasses of liquid every day -and the good news is that you can count tea and coffee, as long as they're part of a healthy, balanced diet. So, make sure you and your staff have access to fresh drinking water. You could even invest in some good quality tea and coffee supplies. Think about setting up a subscription service - we like the Kent & Sussex Tea & Coffee service, which takes the effort out of queuing at the supermarket every month.
Tip 3 - Yoga
Many of us already enjoy yoga classes and find it a way to relax at the weekend or in the evenings. More and more companies are taking those benefits and incorporating them into the working day, with early morning or lunchtime sessions delivered online from a yoga studio into people's homes before starting their day or afternoon. For most businesses, the cost of an online class is a good investment. It's easy to find a yoga teacher near you: try organisations like The Society of Yoga Practitioners or ask around for a recommendation.
Tip 4 - Mind Your Mind
People often find it easier to talk about pain, discomfort or physical conditions than how they are feeling and issues that might be causing problems at home. Encouraging staff to be open to conversations about mental health as much as physical health is essential, and developing a non-judgemental culture is vital for us all. The mental health charity Mind has a wealth of resources that can help. Just visit mind.org.uk/workplace . You could try introducing mindfulness sessions that encourage us all to be aware of how we are feeling, using breathing techniques
Tip 5 - The New Big 'C'
Since the Covid-19 pandemic hit in 2020, no organisation can ignore the necessary actions to keep employees safe from Covid, communicating the local regulations and instituting testing policies. For many employers, helping symptomatic staff deal with the illness and isolation is vital, with longer-term monitoring and advice on the appropriate course of action. Extending those actions to family members is a reasonably low-cost benefit to ensure employees are more effective in working from home because they are isolating or recovering from the infection. Whatever the future holds for the workplace, organisations like ACAS provide a wealth of information on Covid-19, and it's worth revisiting their advice pages regularly.
There are many simple ways to improve wellbeing in the workplace - let us know what works for you.